APA and its partner organizations in Supporting Truth about Animal Research: A Coalition of Scientific Societies and its Committee on Animal Research Ethics advocated with the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor-Health and Human Services-Education to respond to anti-animal research language that had appeared in the House version of the Labor-HHS bill earlier this year. The Senate subcommittee responded favorably with language that addresses the concerns of NIH-supported animal researchers on post-research adoption of animals in research and primate research.

In language on p. 115 of the Labor-HHS-Education report, the Senate Appropriations Committee expresses concern about calls to create more regulatory burden and prescriptive requirements for extramural research facilities across the country. On p. 121 of the same document, the committee expresses support for primate research and asks NIH to provide additional information on its plans to make available and safely transport primates for research:

“Primate Research: The committee recognizes the importance of nonhuman primates in biomedical research in America for developing vaccines and treatments for public health threats. The committee remains concerned about efforts to mandate the reduction of nonhuman primate models in both intramural and extramural research while Congress has simultaneously mandated research that requires these models. Further, the committee has concerns about the long-term availability and transportation issues regarding nonhuman primates that is putting American biomedical research in jeopardy. Accordingly, the committee directs that NIH provide a written update on the critical necessity of nonhuman primates to biomedical research, specific areas of research in which nonhuman primates are used, and how NIH plans to address future availability and transportation of this critical model in the fiscal year 2022 [Congressional Justification].”

The Senate and House are negotiating final funding for FY 2021 and must pass additional legislation before temporary funding runs out on Dec. 11. But report language, although not technically binding upon the agencies it refers to, does reflect congressional opinion and intent, and agencies normally adhere to it.

For more information, contact Pat Kobor.